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A G-Man's Journal Mass Market Paperback – November 1, 1999


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 640 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket; Reprint edition (November 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671568000
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671568009
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.7 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,913,842 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

A true insider's peek into the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Washington halls of power, A G-Man's Journal establishes its pull-no-punches tone with a bang and a snap as Oliver "Buck" Revell recounts his personal interview with infamous FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover on the first day Revell was assigned to headquarters: "You know," he quotes Hoover, "the president (Kennedy) was the one who ordered the investigation of Martin Luther King."

Revell, who served more than 30 years with the FBI, reached the second-highest position available in the bureau, that of assistant director. His differences of opinion with various FBI directors after Hoover make great reading, though his criticisms of current director Louis Freeh are surprising given the general applause Freeh has received from policymakers and pressmen. Among certain elements, Revell has a reputation as a member of Reagan's "shadow government," responsible for rogue policy decisions outside the scope of the president's constitutional powers. Many conspiracy buffs suggest he played a less-than-honorable role in both the Iran-Contra affair and the tragic bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988. While not directly addressing the notoriety surrounding him, Revell manages to make clear that he believed throughout his career that he was doing exactly what he should have as a representative of the FBI, performing his duties with honor. --Tjames Madison --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Second in command at the FBI for 11 years, Revell talks about some of his biggest cases.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 28, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Revell, in this co-authored book, believes in the philosophy "never say in 350 pages what you can say in 570."
The events are apparently purely chronological, and almost stream-of-consciousness. There's a lot of jumping from subject to subject, with little transition or unifying theme. While the book has a bibliography and index, it's lacking a glossary, which would be helpful for those of us who don't use acronyms like OSG, JSOC, CSG, and CISPES on a daily basis.
The book would be less cluttered if there wasn't a compulsion to include every incident in which Revell wished to claim credit, or rebut an allegation of misconduct against him. For instance, the liner notes claim that Revell "participated in ... the JFK assassination [investigation]." It turns out Revell wasn't even in the FBI at the time; he was a Marine who was liaison to FBI agents who were interviewing Marines who had known Oswald during Oswald's Marine service.
It is an interesting account of agent Revell's career, and FBI history and lore, mainly from within the FBI bureaucracy looking down, and contains some almost-hidden nuggets of insight on personalities and events you probably won't find elsewhere.
Read _No Heroes_ by Danny O. Coulson for a street agent perspective on many of the same events.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By CoolAl27 on January 15, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
It is an informative novel which gives exciting insight into one of the most famous law enforcement agencies of America. Not only learning about the cases that Oliver Revell worked on, but knowing how others in the FBI, including J. Edgar Hoover, thought and said is purely fascinating. This is a must read to anyone interested in the FBI, law enforcement, or federal government agencies.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 5, 1999
Format: Hardcover
The controversy over the Helsinki matter was immediate and long running...no just unresolved. Revell's covering of it in his book is accurate...he is inaccurate on Thurman for one. Accuracy (and honesty) is like virginity - either you've got it or you don't.
Even though the threat was apparently circulated within some parts of the Department of State, it certainly did not receive widespread dissemination. - European papers showed it posted in Moscow and Karen Decker said - not anonymously, and on tape - that is was disseminated. "Widely" is relative - there were NO EUROPEAN STATE DEPARTMENT EMPLOYEES RETURNING TO THE US 3 DAYS BEFORE CHRISTMAS ON THE US FLAG CARRIER - res ipsi loquitor.
At the time I was was assigned to a major European Embassy, with among other things, responsibilty for Internatinal Terrorism and I did not learn of the Helsinki matter until the PA103 tragedy. Well the BKA gave those pictures to as many government and airline agencies as possible. So its an anonymous post vs Karen Decker on ABC - if true, not a good job why brag about it ? But somebody warned those embassy people and posted those warnings.
Immediately upon learning of the threat, a team of FBI and Finnish police were dispatched to conduct an extensive investigation to resolve the Helsinki call, which they did, and it was in no way connected to PA103. To suggest otherwise simply flys in the face of the facts. What facts ? The face saving newspaper accounts a week after the fact - Chris Revell's apparently simultaneous of rebooking and the Helsinki warnings are actions that speak louder than anything Buck Revell has to say.
Read more ›
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 7, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Oliver Revell wrote his memoires....or did he forget some of them ? Some things are clearly missing in his book.
Revell wrote to the readers of amazon.com personally "I will be pleased to respond to comments and questions regarding my book and career." Well, let us see how he responds to this:
"Are you happy that you saved your son from Pan Am 103, Ollie? Do you sometimes think about who was the unlucky guy or girl who took your son's seat and flew right into death that day the 21st of December 1988 ? Or do you still not bother today as you din't bother then ?"
Other crap that upset me on reading the reviews of his book was this phrase: "Women who read this book will find a true heroine in Revell's wife."
Perhaps it should have read: "Young airline passengers who read this book will find a true hero in Revell's son."!!!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 30, 1998
Format: Hardcover
In this breathtakingly fascinating book, Oliver "Buck" Revell, who rose to the hightst job in the FBI, gives what is perhaps the most insightful overview of America's war on crime, espionage and terrorism in the last 30 years. It is a story of legendary exploits and munerous encounters with the most hardened criminals and killers, a meteoric rise to the highest levels in the FBI from where for 11 years Revell spearheaded the reorganization and modernization of the Bureau, and directed all criminal and counter-intelligence operations. The unvarnished praise and criticism of the inner workings of the FBI make for both fascinating reading and provide a historical perspective for such controversial issues as congressional corruption (ABSCAM), the Martin Luther King investigation, the paranoia of Hoover's power, the Savings and Loan scandals, American involvement with the Shah of Iran, the PanAm bombing, the COINTELPRO (counter-intelligence program) and BRILAB (labor racketeering) investigations and Branch Davidians among others. The book covers the timespan from the Kennedy assassination to the Oklahoma City bombing. For 11 years, unde rtwo Directors, Revell served as Deputy Director in charge of the Investigations and Counterintelligence Divisions and as FBI representative on the National Security Council. Revell is one of the most highly decorated FBI agents. Revell's foremost accomplishment was in the reorgainzation of the FBI under Director Clarence Kelley, when he helped throw out what he calls "rediculously rigid rules" and slashed the hamstringing bureaucracy. He prioritized organized crime, counter-terrorism, drug trafficking and money laundering and forged ties with Interpol and leading police organizations around the world.Read more ›
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